Author Topic: the best (????) - working title- 270  (Read 1257 times)

Kelly1258

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the best (????) - working title- 270
« on: December 19, 2008, 04:07:53 AM »
Kelly perched on the edge of the boat, waiting for Shane to finish with his tank.

'Ready?' she asked. He turned around, smacked her with one of his looks.

'Ready.' he replied. They waited on the boat patiently as Matthew made desperate changes to their US patent communication systems. Only hours earlier an E-2C Hawkeye had flown overhead and jammed their communication. After ten minutes Matthew gave them the thumbs up and she returned the gesture before falling into the water. Twenty metres down, an inky, eerie blackness began to cloud around them.

'Over there.'

Kelly followed Shane's finger to a sign plastered to a rotting, concrete wall. She reached out. A soft thread came away in her gloved  hand, revealing severely rotted iron underneath.

'Is that spiders' silk?' Matthew stared at the screen. 'Underwater?'

She followed the silk threads deeper into the water. Something large, dark- strange- moved. She inhaled sharply.

'Matthew, what kind of spid...'

A deathly shriek echoed over her ear piece.

'Matthew! Shane!'

The darkness began to fall in her. She could feel herself panicking. This is no time for panicking! she thought, ‘come on. Think. They’ve taught you better than this. Use it against them.’
'DANNI!!!'
She spun…


She spun, harpoon in hand.

'Shit!' Shane yelled, 'Kelly you ok?'
She shook her head, eyes wide against his glaring torch

'Is that the sign?'

Shane nodded and handed it to her.

Property of the United States Marine Corps

The rest was corroded. The image of the Hawkeye blazed through her mind. She could hear the static buzzing in her ears. She looked down into darkness.

'Go!'

Offline thatollie

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2008, 04:06:22 PM »
Is Danni in the water or on the ship?
I couldn't tell from this piece.
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline eric

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2008, 11:39:53 PM »
This has a lot of energy and perky word usage (perched, smacked, one of his looks, etc.) but it has no character development, no plausible continuity, not much real cohesion.  This may result from its being an  excerpt, but I can only go by what is here.  I like a lot about this piece, but it raises questions.

Ollie is right to wonder about Danni, and I wonder more.  Who or what is Danni?  Where did he, she, or it come from?  Just suddenly appeared? 

Other things are curious too.  How is Kelly communicating  with Matthew?  He's on the boat, she's underwater, and they're having a normal conversation?  Is the Hawkeye a Marine copter?  (I don't know, I'm just asking.)  How  is it that underwater wreckage would be Marines property?  Would a Marines sign have the word "the" in it?  Would it even be spelled out?  Where did she get the harpoon that appears in her hand?    What is furthered by Shane smacking Kelly with his look?  Why not glare or something slightly more boring, but much more specific?  Why were the changes Matthew made desperate ones?  That is an unneeded adjective, I think.  Why is it useful to note that she returned the gesture?  How does Shane communicate with Kelly underwater?  Why did Kelly spin twice?  Why did she have the harpoon only on the second spin? 

Hm, I lost a bunch of annoying questions on this stupid laptop but will try to reconstruct them for you.  Don't want you to miss out on my annoying (but hopefully somewhat helpful) comments. ... Something is a vaguely threatening word, I get that, but it is also ambiguous and abstract, as well as a little hackneyed.  Who is they, as in the ones who taught Kelly?  How much interior monolog do you find Kelly being likely to have twenty meters under water?   How is Kelly communicating with Shane under water?  Why does Shane use a normal conversational tone of voice, including obscenities and shouting, in the drink?  Why do part of Kelly's thoughts go unquoted (this being correct, I think), while other thoughts are in quotes (this appearing to be inconsistent and, I think, incorrect)?  Why does the USMC sign get stated, but the next sentence (a telling sentence) follow with description?  Would this not be smoother if it were something like "She saw 'U. S. Marine Corps,' but could not make out more in the corrosion." ...?  Why did the eerie blackness begin to cloud around them, when in fact it simply clouded around them?  Why did the darkness begin to fall in her when in fact it simply fell?  The "began to" construction is wasted words, and needs to go, for this is a mark of inexperience and wordiness.  What about the sentence, "The darkness began to fall in her."?  What does this mean?  The sentence seems overwrought, at the very least.  It also does not seem to add much.  I would strike it. 

Well, this is enough for now.  I don't do action adventures so much as I used to, probably because I was never very good at them.  They just don't make enough sense to me without characterization and other good things like that.  But this is one I kind of like on a few different levels.  I hope you find my comments somewhat useful and enjoy yourself in this forum, to which I extend welcome on behalf of the various crackpots you have yet to meet.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2008, 12:19:31 AM by eric »

Offline thatollie

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2008, 12:29:24 AM »
eric, I can answer one of your questions.
Quote from: eric
How is Kelly communicating  with Matthew?
Quote from: kelly
US patent communication systems
Another note, kelly, strike out "US patent" and replace with "scuba" or "underwater"
Give it a name that even eric can't misunderstand.

Kelly, when/if you rewrite this, don't clutter the board, just post it in this topic.
Three or four topics tweaking the same piece will move other pieces off the front page [meaning fewer replies.]
« Last Edit: December 21, 2008, 12:36:17 AM by thatollie »
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline eric

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2008, 12:33:58 AM »
Yeah, I missed that,Ollie.  Thought it was ship-to-shore or something.  But even with some electronic thingy like this, my question was, how is it that we have such regular conversation?  Thanks for the catch-up, O.

Offline thatollie

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2008, 12:37:25 AM »
Interesting point. Kelly, can you enlighten us?
Never make a decision standing up.

Offline PretzelGirl

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2008, 04:38:47 AM »
Kelly, don't worry about answering any of those questions in your next post - what you need to do is keep working on this piece so that IT answers them. It was mentioned that Danni just came out of the blue before, and you've rewritten this (it is better, don't get me wrong, the beginning has a lot more description) but Danni still just appears.

Give us more ABOVE the water... the characters talking, interacting...
and as you go, I know you have all the detail in your head, but the reader doesn't. You should not assume that the reader will know about devices that enable speech underwater. That's an example, but do you know what I mean?
Smoke me a clipper, I'll be back for Christmas!
- A. J. Rimmer, Red Dwarf

Kelly1258

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2008, 03:48:09 AM »
thanks guys for all the feedback. I'm working on it and getting there. We'll see how it goes. On break for a little while so have plenty of time.

Thanks again and goodluck with your own work!

Kelly

Kelly1258

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Re: the best (????) - working title- 270
« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2008, 02:34:54 AM »
Thatollie,
The scuba communication stuff works like a simple ear piece and microphone but i will revise the equipment description.

Hope you all had a merry christmas

I'm away for a little while but i'll talk to you all soon

Happy Holidays